Skip to comments.Iraq PM denies shooting inmates
Posted on 07/17/2004 3:00:14 PM PDT by TexKat
WITNESSES have reportedly told an Australian journalist how new Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi shot and killed up to six prisoners just days before his government took control of the country.
A newspaper report today said the two witnesses saw Dr Allawi pull a pistol and execute suspected insurgents at a Baghdad police station.
Dr Allawi's office has denied the claims and branded them "outrageous".
The witnesses said the handcuffed and blindfolded prisoners were lined up against a wall in a courtyard next to the maximum-security cell block in which they were held at the Al-Amariyah security centre.
They say Dr Allawi told bystanders the victims had each killed as many as 50 Iraqis and they "deserved worse than death".
The prime minister's office said Dr Allawi had never visited the centre and he did not carry a gun.
One witness told the Sydney Morning Herald's Iraq correspondent Paul McGeough that before the killings Dr Allawi had told those around him that he wanted to send a clear message to the police on how to deal with insurgents.
"Allawi said that (the prisoners) deserved worse than death but then he pulled the pistol from his belt and started shooting them, " the witness said.
The informants said he shot each young man in the head as about a dozen Iraqi policemen and four Americans from the prime minister's personal security team watched.
The witnesses said seven prisoners were present, but one was only wounded.
The Herald said it was the first time eyewitness accounts of the prime minister's brutality had been obtained.
The witnesses, who were not paid for their information, estimated the shooting to have happened about the third weekend in June.
They were enthusiastic about such killings, with one of them saying: "These criminals were terrorists. They are the ones who plant the bombs."
They said the 58-year-old prime minister "wanted to send a message to his policemen and soldiers not to be scared if they kill anyone especially, they are not to worry about tribal revenge".
The Herald said two of men killed, Ahmed Abdulah Ahsamey and Amer Lutfi Mohammed Ahmed al-Kutsia, may have been foreign fighters.
A third, Walid Mehdi Ahmed al-Samarrai, may have been from Samarra, where insurgents raided the home of Interior minister Falah al-Naqib, killing four of his bodyguards on June 19.
Four of the men were described as "Wahabbi", the term for the foreign fundamentalist insurgency fighters.
Dr Allawi's office dismissed the allegations as rumours spread by the government's enemies.
"We face these sorts of allegations on a regular basis," office spokesman Taha Hussein reportedly said.
"Numerous groups are attempting to hinder what the interim Iraqi government is on the verge of achieving, and occasionally they spread outrageous accusations hoping they will be believed and thus harm the honourable reputation of those who sacrifice so much to protect this glorious country and its now free and respectable people."
A senior adviser to Mr al-Naqib, Sabah Khadum, whose portfolio covers police matters, also dismissed the accounts.
The Herald said US officials in Iraq did not deny allegations outright, but said "this case is closed".
Caption: In the words of your famous classical musician Barry Manilow: This one's for you.
Ive already heard from some outraged liberals on this one. They were silent when Saddam killed between a half million and a million of his own people and his neighbors. Now some vague allegations that this guy killed a few terrorists and they're outraged.
PM Allawi: Remember, guns don't kill terrorists! I do!
Tales of Iyad Allawi personally executing or chopping off extremities of enemy insurgents have all the earmarks of a disinformation campaign. That is what he has hired men for.
It does build up a strong mythos in the minds of his potential detractors, however. Some because they want to picture him as being the new Saddam Hussein, and some because they are trying to build backbone to more actively resist the new emerging Iraq government.
Chances are, that when the governing council finally does elect a representative government, that many other candidates for the prime minister post will emerge. These stories may be getting spread now, in an attempt to somehow influence the selection of the prime minister in that new government. But will that selection be because of gentle persuasion, or are fear and intimidation to be the determining factors?
Your dealing with Islamic Arabs here. Of course it will be built on fear and intimidation.
My kind of Iraqi.
"This is your jihadi. This is your jihadi gunned down. Any questions ?"
I really wish he'd have just said the above.
The Leftists are really showing their hand by being upset the insurgents are getting whacked.
Sounds like we got an Iraqi Judge Roy Bean out there.
I think they'll be silent on this one too after they see this:
Editor defensive over discredited Iraq reports
The Australian ^
Posted on 06/22/2005 7:01:32 PM PDT by jmc1969
THE editor of Melbourne's The Age newspaper has defended Australia's Journalist of the Year, Paul McGeough, in the wake of revelations that he may have erred in two significant reports he filed from Iraq.
McGeough claimed in an article published in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald that former Iraqi interim leader Iyad Allawi shot dead as many as six prisoners in June last year.
But the story was discredited by a report yesterday that Iraqi officials and US special forces bodyguards assigned to Allawi had passed lie detector tests in denying the murder allegations.
"My view is that we have to trust our journalists," The Age editor Andrew Jaspan said yesterday.
"Paul McGeough is a former editor-in-chief of the Sydney Morning Herald - (an) extremely well-respected journalist. It's not as though he's wet behind the ears when he goes to somewhere like Iraq.
"As an editor I have to trust the fact that he is being professional, doing his job well, and on that basis we run his stories," Jaspan said.
A Sydney newspaper quoted a senior government official as saying there was "no evidence whatsoever to support the claims made in the (McGeough) article".
A winner of last year's Graeme Perkin Award for Australian Journalist of the Year, McGeough also reported on Saturday that the rescue of hostage Douglas Wood had supposedly been botched by an Australian raid on a Sunni political leader in Baghdad. ...</snip>
(Excerpt) Read more at theadvertiser.news.com.au .
APRIL 2003 : (ROBERT FISKE PROPAGANDIZES FOR HUSSEIN) "Anyone who doubts that the Iraqi Army is prepared to defend its capital should take the highway south of Baghdad. How, I kept asking myself, could the Americans batter their way through these defenses?" -- Robert Fisk. With Fisk that day was SMH columnist Paul McGeough, who later reported: Robert gets a bit windy from time to time."
[* my note: Paul McGeough is the guy who later claimed, using unsubstantiated and anonymous sources, that the future Iraqi leader Allawi at the time shot prisoners]
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